Mads Pedersen and Manuel Campos regained their world titles while it was business as usual for the world’s best two women paddlers on the penultimate day of the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships in Vejen, Denmark, on Saturday.

Denmark’s Pedersen was once again involved in a tough battle with South Africa’s Andy Birkett, who beat the Dane at both the world championships and The World Games last year. But after last year’s close battles, there was no doubting the winning on Saturday with Pedersen clearing out to victory by more than two minutes.

It caps off a busy week for Pedersen, who also won his first K1 5000 world sprint title in Duisburg, Germany, last Sunday. It’s also his third long-distance marathon world title, having won also in 2019 and 2021.

Norway’s Elvind Vold, who finished fifth behind Pedersen last Sunday, picked up the bronze on Saturday.

Hungary’s Vanda Kiszli has dominated the women’s K1 marathon since her first world title in 2018, and on Saturday won a fifth successive crown. In a repeat of last year, Sweden’s Melina Andersson was once again the only real challenger to the dominance of Kiszli, but still finished almost two minutes behind the Hungarian.

South Africa’s Christie MacKenzie was third.

Ukraine Liudmyla Babak Vejen 2023

Ukraine’s Liudmyla Babak has an even more impressive record in the women’s C1, on Saturday making it six world titles in a row with another comprehensive victory. Babak finished ahead of teammate Olena Tsyhankova, with Poland’s Paulina Grzelkiewicz taking the bronze.

Spain’s Manuel Campos finally brought up his fifth men’s C1 world title on Saturday, four years after winning his fourth title and 11 years after he won his first. In the tightest finish of the day, Campos edged out Hungary’s Marton Kover by just half a second. It was a third consecutive silver medal for Kover, who is also a four-time world champion.

Spain’s Manuel Garrido, the defending world champion, finished third.

The ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships finish on Sunday.

Pics by Svend-Erik Boysen

Canoe Marathon